Latest North Carolina news, sports, business and entertainment at 3:20 p.m. EDT
ELECTION 2020-US SENATE-NORTH CAROLINA
Tillis, Cunningham raise most for US Senate in last 3 months
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – Republican incumbent Thom Tillis and Democrat Cal Cunningham have raised the most money for next year’s U.S. Senate race in North Carolina during the past three months.
Federal campaign reports due this week show Tillis had the most cash in his campaign account on Sept. 30 with $4.9 million. He raised $1.2 million during the third quarter. Cunningham reported raising $1 million and having $1.1 million in cash on hand.
Among other announced Republican candidates, Garland Tucker collected $691,000, of which over half came from his personal loans. Tucker had $107,000 in cash on hand. Sandy Smith reported raising $133,000, with $66,000 on hand.
Among other Democrats, Erica Smith said Wednesday there’s an error in her report that appears to reduce third-quarter contributions below $50,000. Trevor Fuller reported little activity.
BIRDS CRASH INTO BUILDING
Hundreds of birds crash into NASCAR Hall of Fame building
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – An animal rescue group says more than 300 birds crashed into the NASCAR Hall of Fame in downtown Charlotte, killing some 100 of them.
Carolina Waterfowl Rescue says on its Facebook page that 100 of the chimney swifts are severely injured with broken legs, wings and other fractures. They say the rest of the birds were stunned by the impact and it’s hoped they can be released in a few days.
The agency says it received a call around 11 p.m. Tuesday reporting birds diving straight into the building’s windows. A Charlotte woman’s video aired by Fox 46 shows the birds crashing into the windows and lying near the building’s entrance.
State biologists say birds are most likely to fly into buildings in the fall when they begin migrating.
Death penalty trial begins for NC inmate in prison attack
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – A death penalty trial has begun for the first of four North Carolina inmates accused of using scissors and hammers from a prison workshop to kill four workers and hurt eight others during a failed escape attempt.
The Virginian-Pilot reports that armed police surrounded inmate Mikel Brady as video of the gruesome aftermath was replayed in court.
Former Pasquotank Correctional officer Scott Stormer testified that he and other responding guards found the inmates attacking an officer in October 2017. Stormer said he felt a punch to his back during a scuffle with an inmate, only to later realize he’d been stabbed.
The inmates were ultimately surrounded and caught. WTKR-TV reports an Elizabeth City police officer testified he was hit with the “odor of pure blood” upon arriving.
Democrats seek debate on legislature’s sex harassment bill
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – Democrats are trying to revive legislation this year to create an updated process to investigate sexual harassment claims involving North Carolina legislators and General Assembly workers.
Sen. Erica Smith of Northampton County is attempting a parliamentary maneuver to move a bill she sponsored and is sitting in a committee to the Senate floor. She’ll need the signatures of several Republicans to do it in the coming days.
Smith said at a Legislative Building news conference on Wednesday that the current anti-harassment policy is flawed and the process for adjudicating claims doesn’t serve victims well.
The bill would set clear sanctions for sexual harassment and misconduct, develop a confidential filing process and direct an outside party be hired to help with investigations. She says the proposal promotes equity, protection and opportunity.
PIT BULL RESCUED
Rescue group seeks help to treat severely burned pit bull
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina rescue group is looking for help as it treats a pit bull it says had severe burns and a shattered hip.
Carolina Adopt-A-Bulls says on its Facebook page that it believes Zeus was mistreated, adding that the burns appear to be chemical burns. While the dog has had surgery, the rescue group says treatment for the burns will be a long process.
WRAL reports doctors from Triangle Veterinary Hospital in Durham have been giving Zeus hydrotherapy daily by washing away dead skin and bacteria to heal his burns and decrease the risk of infection.
The rescue group says it’s planning fundraisers to help cover the cost of treatment.
EARNS-BANK OF AMERICA
Bank of America hit by $2B charge, still tops expectations
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – Bank of America is reporting a 21% drop in third quarter profits due to a $2 billion impairment charge.
The nation’s second largest bank reported net income of $5.78 billion, or 56 cents per share. That’s better than the per-share projections of 50 cents that Wall Street was calling for, according to a survey by Zacks Investment Research.
Revenue was $28.54 billion and revenue net of interest expense was $22.81 billion, edging out expectations.
Shares of Bank of America Corp., based in Charlotte, North Carolina, are up almost 2% before the opening bell Wednesday.
Portions of this story were generated by Automated Insights using data from Zacks Investment Research. Access a Zacks stock report on BAC at https://www.zacks.com/ap/BAC
ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE
Records: Pipeline deal investigators incur $60K in expenses
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina state lawmakers are spending tens of thousands of dollars on private investigators examining a 2018 agreement between Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper and utilities building the Atlantic Coast Pipeline.
Citing public records, The Insider news service reported Eagle Intel Services has sent invoices to the General Assembly totaling nearly $60,000 through July for hundreds of hours of investigative and administrative work.
A legislative committee sought outside help to scrutinize a $58 million side deal designated for environmental mitigation, economic development and other projects. Cooper has said repeatedly the agreement was separate from state permitting.
Cooper’s office says Republican legislators are “wasting taxpayer dollars on a fake investigation.” A spokesman for Senate leader Phil Berger says legislative leaders believe the cost is reasonable. Eagle Intel is composed of federal agents.
N Carolina Environmental Dept investigates chemical release
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina environmental officials are investigating a report by Greensboro that a carcinogenic chemical was released during wastewater treatment by a company.
A North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality statement Tuesday cites Greensboro officials who said the chemical 1,4 dioxane came from Shamrock Environmental Corp.
The city says the chemical was released from the company’s waste processing facility and eventually turned up in the Cape Fear River basin.
However, state officials say the City of Greensboro holds the discharge permit for the pretreatment program. State officials are pursuing enforcement.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has identified 1,4 dioxane as a likely human carcinogen. It’s a clear liquid found in paint strippers , varnishes and other solutions.
A representative of Shamrock Environmental didn’t immediately return a call seeking comment Wednesday.